Nature Story Bag

A day at the beach collecting shells and building sand castles inspires children to make friends with animals like the crabs runing along the beach and to dream up a story about the inquisitive and inventive princes and princesses who live in the sand castle they have just built. Stories help children understand their outdoor …

Asking Questions that Open the Possibility Door

Explore the learning potential and creative thinking benefits of shifting the way you ask your child questions. Good questions help children to think outside the square, they challenge assumptions and help to spark a desire to explore possibilities. A think dive into the unknown. Children love to ponder over ideas that are a bit silly …

Creativity

What happens when we let external influences dim our inner light? Madrid based animators, Daniel Martinez Lara and Rafa Cano Mendez created this touching 8 minute short film that shows what happens when we let external influences dim our inner light. Copi is trying to teach his son, Paste, how to live and what is correct …

The Twelve Months of Endangered Animals – Hedgehogs

"What is the purpose of a Hedgehog?" This question popped up in a discussion about endangered animals and particularly endangered hedgehogs. Images of cute little hoglets flashed through my mind as well as beautiful illustrations from the book The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle  by Beatrix Potter. After cats, hedgehogs might be the internet's favourite animal. …

Biomimicry for Young Children – Magic DinoPills

What if you were a dentist? Can you invent something inspired by dinosaurs? Magnificent plant-eating dinosaurs provided inspiration for the idea of Magic DinoPills. The long-necked, plant-eating giants such as Diplodocus and Camarasaurus grew new teeth every couple of months. Their diet consisting of plants such a trees, bushes, cycads, ginkgoes and ferns worn down …

Elephants, where are they? Draw a Map of Endangered Animals

Every elephant counts! On the Fifth of May, we saved Five Trumpeting Elephants But where are they? The magnificent elephants migrate and cross borders. Elephants have no passports like humans and it vital to count the numbers and see where they are to help protect them. To help protect elephants in Africa "The Great Elephant …

Be a Rabbit Detective – Life Cycle, Biomimicry, Inspiration for Ideas

In a local park not far from our house there are lots of rabbits running around. Watching the bouncy rabbits is always an exciting time.Rabbits are also a common pet. And pets can provide the perfect inspiration for new ideas. What if you were trapped in a cage with no friends or toys to play …

Biomimicry for Young Children – Inspired by Endangered Orangutangs

On the third day of March We saved three Swinging Orangutans Our think dive this month is inspired by not only orangutans but also dreams about Easter bunnies and chocolate. After we have learnt that the production of palm oil is a major threat to orangutans we decided to make a chocolate bark using chocolate …

Biomimicry for Young Children Inspired by the Endagered Sloths

Bring slowness into the world! On the Second Day of February, We Saved Two Sleepy Sloths Would it not be great to stretch time? How can we celebrate slowfulness? William Beebe was a sloth researcher who was very impressed by the sloths' slowness. He wrote,  "Sloths have no right to be living on this earth, …

Biomimicry for Young Children – Inspired by Endangered Dugongs – Donald Dugong Seacleaner

Meet Donald Dugong Seacleaner! The graceful dugongs spend time eating seagrass from the bottom of the sea. Seagrass is important to save. We wrote a story about Doctor Delia Dugong who saved the seagrass. We also reversed the thinking and ended up with an idea where we take something away from the sea that does …

Biomimicry for Young Children – Inspired by Endangered Dugongs

Dugongs spark our curiosity and tug our heart-strings. These sea cows are beautiful and fascinating creatures. The first day of January we saved One swimming dugong Inspired by the carol "The Twelve days fo Christmas", we made up a song where we each month saved an animal - The Twelve Months of Endangered Animals Song. …

The Twelve Days of Endangered Animals Christmas Challenge – Day 12

On the twelfth day of Christmas  my true love sent to me 12 drummers drumming The last challenge inspired by the traditional as well as the Australian version of the Christmas Carol The Twelve Days of Christmas. Can you rewrite the song and use endangered animals as inspiration. Perhaps you can write a version that …

The Twelve Days of Endangered Animals Christmas Challenge – Day 11

Does nagging help? Does nagging make you stop doing something? In the Australian version  of Twelve Days of Christmas, we have On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love to me 11 numbats nagging Photo Helenabella So what can we do instead of nagging? Perhaps you can make a play and perform it during …

The Twelve Days of Endangered Animals Christmas Challenge – Day 8

Dairy cows! Are cows an endangered species? On the eighth day of Christmas my true love sent to me: 8 Maids a Milking The loss of biodiversity is not only threatening wild animals but also farm animals. Farm animals have been domesticated for centuries but today many species are not regarded as suitable for contemporary …

Kindness & Christmas – Spread Christmas Spirit Wherever You Go

  Everyone can make a difference. Everyone can be kind. And everyone can have creative ideas about acts of kindness during the Festive Season! There are many wonderful and creative lists where you can select acts of kindness that your students or child can carry out during December. If you are looking for ways to …

Slugs are Cool

Would it not be great if you could smell with your body just like a slug? Slugs are everywhere! And gooey slime is a wonderful substance that can solve many problems. Britain has ideal conditions for slugs to thrive - cool damp summers and warmish mild wet winters. Climate changes also contribute into turning our …

Spooky Spiderlicious Spycamera – Halloween Inspired Biomimicry for Young Children

Be inspired by Spiders to prevent a thief from stealing Halloween treats. Spiders! Oh no! Although I have never been afraid of spiders I must admit that finding a poisonous redback in my shoes in Queensland did make me jump back. The redback spider is a beautiful black spider with a big red strip on …

CroakMet Messaging Service – Biomimicry for Young Children

In the summertime, bike riding is, even more, fun! Yet there are several problems with bike riding. Frogs amazing bulging eyes and their low horse croaking sound provided inspiration to solve two of the most annoying problems. How to talk to your best friend without shouting? How to see everything that goes on behind you? …

Looking for “Talking” Trees an Exciting Way to Walk Through the Woods

“These trees are friends,” he said, craning his neck to look at the leafless crowns, black against a gray sky. “You see how the thick branches point away from each other? That’s so they don’t block their buddy’s light.” Peter Wohlleben   Imagine meeting someone who has written a best seller about the way trees …

Daffodils Dancing in the Wind – Biomimicry for Young Children

The poem "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud" or Daffodils was composed in 1804, two years after Wordsworth saw the flowers while walking by Ullswater. It was a stormy day and the inspiration for the poem came from a description of the event written by his sister Dorothy. Through our curious biomimicry lens we were …

Ice-Cream Roots – Mixing Ideas with a Touch of Magic and Imagination

Thinking, whether it is planning what information you need to solve a problem, exploring where in your body you feel certain, or searching for new ideas, is something that should be exciting and fun. For too long the image of a serious person sitting still and thinking about serious stuff have ruled. A creative approach …

Jelly Bean Frog Story Writing and Robos- Biomimicry for Young Children

Tiny, tiny, tiny frogs! Some frogs are the size of a jellybean. Jelly bean frogs - wonderful inspiration! Of course we could not resist cutting out the tiniest frogs and to put them beside jelly beans. Brachycephalus frogs are less than a 1 cm long (0.39 inches) or approximately the size of a jelly bean. …

Learning Requires New Skills – Critical Thinking, Lat Jumping and Biomimicry

What do you think of the idea that students should be allowed to use the Internet in exams? We may be at a turning point for exams. At least high school examinations but I am sure that the changes will eventually spread to primary school. The idea that an examination should gauge whether a child …

Cubist Glue Art, Doodling, and Sleepy Parrotfish – Biomimicry for Young Children

Imagine that you are a tired parrotfish.You are going to sleep but first you need to make a protective cocoon. A cocoon that will keep enemies away.What does it feel like inside the cocoon? One exercise in the booklet Biomimicry for Young Children - Sea Life is about the colourful and interesting parrotfish. What things …

Crittery Steps and Long Jumps – Critical and Lateral Thinking

There are many metaphors that describe thinking – but they are  constructed for adults. New and engaging terms are needed to explain different thinking styles for young children. The metaphor Think Dive is fun and it may help children to explore their own thinking process. It also explains in a clear way what is required …

Dandelion Magic – Fly Away With Your Ideas

  Pale little dandelion, in her white shroud, Heareth the angel-breeze call from the cloud. Tiny plumes fluttering, make no delay, Little winged dandelion, soareth away. From "The Little Dandelion" by Helen Barron Bostwick. Children's knowledge of nature is dwindling. Although this in itself is sad, it is even more alarming is that children are …

Green Thinking For the Future – Critical Thinking Comes After

  Trying to inspire children and adults to believe that thinking is cool and fun is hard work. Even though many people believe that it is important to think, few people actively tries to improve the character of thinking. It is a tricky business to enhance awareness about different approaches to thinking and about ways …